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Hic sunt camelopardus: this historical edition of The Browser is presented for archaeological purposes; links and formatting may be broken.

Facebook As A Window Into Social Media

Timothy Burke | Easily Distracted | 23 January 2013

Wonkish, but worth it. Facebook has made a bargain with investment capital that forces it to behave badly towards users. It will keep on wearing them down with lures and intrusions until they give up even more of their data. But is the data really worth that much? A lot of it merely tells you how people on Facebook behave on Facebook

Defeated And Deluded

Gary Wills | New York Review Of Books | 21 January 2013

On the culture and history of the American South: "Tradition dies hardest among those who cannot admit to the toll it has taken on them. That is why the worst aspects of the South are resurfacing under Obama’s presidency. That a black should have not merely rights but prominence, authority, and even awe—that is what many Southerners cannot stomach"

Linda Riss Pugach, Life Ripped From Headlines, Dies At 75

Margalit Fox | New York Times | 24 January 2013

He was a lawyer. She was a beauty. She ditched him. He hired men to throw acid in her face, blinding her. He was declared insane three times and imprisoned for 14 years. He wrote from jail promising to buy her a seeing-eye dog. When he got parole, she married him. They stayed married for 38 years. "Ours was a storybook romance”, he said this week

The Unbearable Vanity Of Davos

R. James Breiding | Wall Street Journal | 23 January 2013

"The World Economic Forum's founder and boss, Klaus Schwab is an understated, un-charismatic, slightly awkward man. But if his genius for personal chemistry is elusive, his genius for strategic insights is self-evident. The WEF says it is there to improve the world, but it is really there to exploit rich people's need to feel important"

Siri Rising

Bianca Bosker | Huffington Post | 22 January 2013

Back story on iPhone's voice-operated interface. Answering questions is just the beginning. Wait till it starts doing things. "Siri's history suggests a fantastical future of virtual assistants is coming; where we now see Siri as a footnote to the iPhone's legacy, some day soon the iPhone may be remembered as a footnote to Siri"

We Must Build An Enormous McWorld In Times Square

Jeb Boniakowski | Awl | 23 January 2013

Warning: silly piece. But wonderfully well done. Argument for buiding McDonald's flagship store in Times Square serving McDonald's local specials from all over the world — McRice burger from Taiwan, McArabia Grilled Kofta from Pakistan, McHomard from Canada etc. With a food lab upstairs where chefs devise new dishes using molecular gastronomy

Video of the day: Man On The Moon: Real Or Hoax?

Thought for the day:

"On a planet occupied now by seven billion inhabitants, I am amazed by the difference that one human being can make" — Howard Gardner

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